David Blunkett was among MPs who paid a call when the Rugby League World Cup Trophy was on display in the Houses of Parliament.
The Labour MP for Sheffield Brightside and Hillsborough attended an event where the trophy was on display in New Palace Yard off the Palace of Westminster, as part of events to promote the UK’s hosting of the competition next year.
Mr Blunkett said: “There is no other sport which can claim to be as grassroots as Rugby League. While in Sheffield it has never had a prominent place, I remember going to see the Eagles when they were in the top flight and the sheer energy and enthusiasm of all those involved.
“I hope that alongside better times for our football clubs we can also build on that commitment and energy that Rugby League generates.”